The Project

Every migrant’s story is a beast all its own. Barbed wire to the touch, or mazapan tender. Wrought from brittle citizenship or building shelter in a place where the neighbors call them monster.  

In Vidas Suspendidas (Suspended Lives), Latinx artists from across Philadelphia shed their favored mediums and reclaim the piñata as a common cultural construction. What emerges, are life sized self portraits embodying Mexican iconography and kinetic self realization. 

This project was created by Nora Hiriart Litz, director for Art and Culture at Puentes de Salud, and co-sponsored by Puentes de Salud.

Vidas Suspendidas is an exploration of the immigrant narrative set in liminal space.  A restoration of latinidad as not only a politically charged identity, but a mystic existence. Together, the Vidas Suspendidas artists dissect their common obstacles, and celebrate their individuality through sculpture and story. 



Audio Stories


Dulce N.
Dulce N. Español
Dulce N. English

Antonio Español
Antonio English

Ari Español
Ari English


Ivonne Español
Ivonne English

Dulce C.
Dulce C. Español
Dulce C. English

Damara Español
Damara English

Nacho Español
Nacho English

About the Process

Videography and Directing: Antonio Arroniz
Editing: Jose Mazariegos
Beautiful Mexico: Oso Kalako
Translation: Ivonne
A PhillyCAM Production


Lead Artist

Nora Hiriart Litz

Contributing Artists

Damara, Damaris, Ivonne, Dulce C., Dulce N., Antonio, Ari, José, Nacho

Special Thanks

Dr. Steve Larson, Esther Morales, Alexandra Wolkoff, Alvaro, Tenara Calem, Katie Dammers, Melissa Joseph, Chelsea Nader, Carol Deutsch, Christine Manzur, Judy Vassallo, Melissa D’Agostino, Ludy Soderman, Paul Spencer, Edelweiss, Graciela


Nora Hiriart Litz, Leah Reisman


Antonio Arroniz

Audio Recording and Editing

Nora Hiriart Litz


Ari Gutierrez

Translation and Interpretation

Nora Hiriart Litz, Leah Reisman


Leah Reisman

Web Design

Leah Reisman

Technical Support

Israel Rodríguez, Antonio Arroniz, José Lemus, Ivonne, Cristian

Nora Hiriart Litz is a printmaker and painter born in Mexico City. She attended the Arts Students League in New York and received her BFA at Moore College of Art and Design. Nora currently works in between Philadelphia and Mexico City via a career focused on the arts, education, and activism for human rights. Since 2013, Nora has served as the inaugural Director of Art and Cultural programming for Puentes de Salud. In recent years, she received grants from the Leeway Foundation and National Association of Latino Arts and Culture to support her work.

Puentes de Salud (Bridges of Health) is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that promotes the health and wellness of South Philadelphia’s rapidly growing Latino immigrant population through high-quality health care, innovative educational programs, and community building. The foundation of Puentes de Salud rests on the belief that community health is not the sole domain of health care providers. Health and wellness result from a collaborative, multidisciplinary effort that focuses on addressing the conditions in which we grow, learn, live, work and age.